Wednesday, February 29, 2012


Bitty Bosco resin before
new glasses

1.50…that's what the tag on the new pair of glasses I just purchased read. Hard to believe I needed a stronger prescription for my eyes, but as of late I have been having a difficult time working on the smaller models. Little by little I was noticing my eyes straining more and more. I convinced myself that everything was fine until I went to take photos. After the shots were finished I'd sit back and be amazed at how awful parts of my work looked. This week I couldn't physically look and work without everything being blurry. I'll need a proper evaluation but in the meantime a quick pair if stronger reading glasses came to the rescue.

Bitty Bosco resin after
new glasses

"Intermission II"
Graphite, Acrylics and Watercolor on paper

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

What I See

Every morning I wake and start my daily ritual. First, I look outside my bedroom window to make sure that my car has not been stolen (habit from living in Brooklyn) nor that it hasn't been demolished over night by a drunk driver driving recklessly down my street. The second thing I do in the morning is look out at the huge pine tree across the street. Every day since moving here in June I have been meaning to draw what I see and what always makes me laugh especially on a very windy day. Today was that day. :D

What is outside
my bedroom window.

What I see.

Graphite and watercolor on paper

“Play is the beginning of knowledge.”

Monday, February 27, 2012


I was hoping a few of the daffodil bulbs I planted last Fall took and weren't eating by squirrel and just a handful seems to survive. I found them by accident today while clearing out some paper junk that blew into my little box garden in the front of the house. Of course the little mice came along to celebrate the find.

What was in the garden

What I saw.

Two current commissions.
getting glazed

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Little Lonestar & Hearts

The weekend was pretty much about Little Lonestar and hearts. Spent most of my studio time laying down oil washes on a Little Lonestar. I'm finding that light glazing is producing a richer result. The hearts pretty much showed up today. Not sure why I was graced with so many today (these aren't even all of them I saw today) but I love when they suddenly show up around me.

Little Lonestar

Little Lonestar being
painted to a grulla.

Dorsal stripe on Little Lonestar

More Hearts

Oozing out of a Pop Tart
(Yeah I caved this morning)

Blue tape on the wall when pulled off
pulled off tape (naturally) and double hearts.

...the sweetest heart today.

Picked the mushroom up from the
pack, dirt fell out...shape of a heart.

"Another Kiss"
Graphite and Watercolor on archival bristol.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Graphite and Watercolor on archival bristol

Thursday, February 23, 2012


Postal Gold

I have the
post office.

Anyone who ships out many packages during the year through the USPO will recognize this picture as postal gold. Don't ask how in the world I managed to score Priority tape this morning from the lovely postal worker behind the counter, but I did. Nothing compares to this shipping tape. And yeah, there are two rolls there. Im so buying her Godiva chocolate. She looked like a woman who would appreciate fine chocolate on a hard work day.

Meanwhile, I've fallen in love with the visiting Indian Silver resin. I have been procrastitning on finishing him (and I only have about an hour left to finsh) cause I know he'll have to leave the next day and Im not ready to let him go. There is something about Deborah McDermott's sculptures that when painted, magic happens. The resin looses it's coldness and it seems to breath. I may actually have to pull out my tack and play. I'm sorta curious to see if my Jessica Freedman saddle will fit this guy. Also in the news, the pumpkin I forgot to ditch since Halloween on the front porch is decaying nicely. I'm so inspired by this and may have to draw it/paint it soon.

Decay fascinates me

"The Hug"
Graphite, Acrylic and Watercolor on archival bristol

"The best gift you can give is a hug; one size fits all and no one ever minds if you return it."

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Fortune Cookies

"Fortune 3"
Graphite, Watercolor and
Decoupaged paper on archival bristol

I'm craving Chinese fortune cookies now! Not because I want a cookie but because I want more fortunes to play around with. This idea has been great fun. I may have to search out a bag of fortune cookies somewhere just so I have a fresh and new supply of sayings for my mice to play around with. These two just won't stop scampering about in my head.

Little Lonestar (grulla) getting oil glazes

Non Studio Days

Shot around the studio: Work desk

Non studio days are fun and necessary to keep creative flow going. I'd been experiencing some burn out in the studio, in particular with the horses. I just needed a tiny break from laying down color and putting in hours of detail on pieces. In doing something completely different and non studio I found inspiration and new creative fire.

I had a photo shoot today and the site I met the photographers at was an old run down coal breaker. I had never been to this site and everything about it was fascinating to me. The shapes of the broken windows, the decay of the metal and the colors of the moss growing everywhere on the ground and stone inspired me. The one spot the photographers shot me in was even more fascinating as it held the most interesting green color. Someone had taken that interest even further with salmon colored spray paint on these walls which was, oddly enough, the perfect complimentary color to the natural moss green growing on the concrete. These two colors won't leave me alone and have planted themselves firmly in my brain. I need to use them somewhere soon in a project. They were beautiful.

Shot around the studio: Resins and paintings

Shot around the studio: Mouse drawings

"The Fall"
(Release and Surrender-She Gives Up)
Graphite, Acrylics and Watercolors on paper

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Found Heart

Not only is it a heart,
it's pink!

The weather here has been fairly decent so I've been running every day. Well, it's been a combination of walking and running. Running the flat surfaces and mostly walking the hills. The hills here in PA are pretty steep and to run them I'll need to build up, but for now walking them is fairly tiring.

On my adventure today I found a pink heart shaped rock. It pretty much jumped out at me on the road. I couldnt help but pick it up, take it home and draw around it. My collection of "drawing around objects" is growing. Not sure what I'm going to do with them all, especially since they are difficult to store unlike most of my other flat work which can be neatly placed in a flat container.

I just had to do it...

Oh yeah? Cool!

Graphite, Acrylic and Watercolor on archival bristol.

"It is not so much our friends' help that helps us, as the confidence of their help."

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Seems Like...

Seems like a no-brainer, but putting the finishing touches on areas like the tail and the muzzle can be tricky and sometimes baffling. The tail in general has a lot of sharp detail. Getting that detail to not only blend but pop nicely can be tricky. Here are some quick suggestions to producing nicer manes and tails using a dry brush method.

Prep tail by adding gesso (allow to dry)
and then add your base color

Cover the entire tail
most especially the grooves.
Two-three coats should cover.

Mix a bit of white into base color then lightly
dry brush onto the surface. Only the raised portions will receive paint.

Simple dry brush technique
used on the mane.

Add darker color in grooves
to create depth

Muzzle color can pose a huge problem. Add too much red and it looks like lipstick. Add too much white and it starts to look chalky and unrealistic. So what colors does one use to produce realistic looking muzzles and how is that paint applied so it blends nicely with the white markings and surrounding areas?

Alizaran Crimson, Burnt Sienna and
some linseed oil used to create the muzzle color.

Just a touch of Alizarin Crimson and Burnt Sienna in linseed oil will produce a very transparent mixture. To this mixture add a bit of Titanium white oils.

Titanium white oils added to mixture

Dab placed right in the middle of
the muzzle.

Taking a dry blender brush
blend the dab into the entire muzzle area.

Finish is smooth and the proper "fleshy"
muzzle color. Additional color (darker)
can be added inside nostrils.

Graphite and Watercolor on archival bristol.

"Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Just walk beside me and be my friend." ~Albert Camus
Graphite and Watercolor on archival bristol

"...A hug is an amazing thing, 
It's just the perfect way
 to show the love we're feeling but can't find the words to say....
" ~Johnny Ray Ryder, Jr.

Friday, February 17, 2012

A Cheep Diversion

Graphite and watercolor on paper

My friend Jenn Kroll got peeps. There is nothing more sweet than a handful of baby chickens peeping and pecking and wobbling about the floor. The moment I saw her photos I couldn't help myself and I had to sketch her brand new peeps. It is a bit of a diversion but a fun one.....a cheep one!!!

Graphite on paper

Graphite and watercolor on paper

Graphite and watercolor on paper

Graphite and watercolor on paper

Graphite on paper

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Indian Silver Paint Correction

Beginning stages he's orange

I thought putting all the photos of the paint repair on Indian Silver together might be helpful. When you see the transformation happening in steps and all together it sometimes bring better understanding to the process. Again, the transformation that took place happened slowly and with several layers of oil glaze. If you add color slowly you can control the color.

Layering in oils with a silk pad




Graphite and Watercolor on archival bristol.

"Flying without feathers is not easy; my wings have no feathers." ~Titus Maccius Plautus